May 8, 2014
Spain orders two more BAM patrol vessels
The contract is in line with a government plan outlined in February to maintain activity at the state-owned firm's shipyards. The order will be split between Navantia's two surface ship yards at Ferrol and Cadiz.
This second series of the Buque de Acción Marítima not only means a contract for the Spanish Navy but also ensures the continuity of the programme begun in July 2006.
Despite the drastic cutbacks in Spain's defence budgets in recent years, economic conditions have improved to the point that Spain can go ahead with the Ministry of Industry-financed order.
The Spanish Navy has long been calling for more BAM vessels, multi-mission ships which have already been deployed as part of the Somalia international counter-piracy flotilla.
Although the Spanish Navy was to receive 14 BAM vessels, so far the Armada has received four of the 2,490 ton, 93.9 m long vessels.
BAM is a design which Navantia has been offering to several other countries as it has looked to counterbalance the lack of domestic orders. Industry sources suggest that BAM vessels would be the easiest of the company's ships to sell on to a foreign buyer should a contract materialise during the build period.